Lifestyle

How To Be A Pen Pal

how-to-be-a-penpal

Have you ever considered having a pen pal?  I’ve known quite a few people that had pen pals when they were kids, but then grew out of it.   However, having a pen pal as an adult is a great way to further your knowledge of other cultures and circumstances.  I joined Interpals.net eight years ago, and while I’m not as active on it as I once was, I truly enjoyed the experience.  If you’ve ever considered it, then please continue reading this post for my Do’s and Don’ts to the pen pal experience.

Security

The first thing I have to point out if you’re thinking of joining a pen pal matchup site is that your security is in your own hands.  That means being very careful what information you place on your profile, as it could lead to an unscrupulous person harming you in some way.  Something as simple as using a picture that might show your home address or mentioning your employer for anyone to see could be extremely dangerous.  Common sense facts like not giving out your social security number (if you have one) or credit card info should be exactly that, common sense.

Honesty

The best policy, right?  One thing that I think helped me to connect with some really great people during my time on Interpals is that I was honest about myself and what I was on the site for.  As with other social media sites, there are always people out there with nefarious reasons why they want to interact with you.  Even before my marriage, I made it clear that I was not on that site to look for a husband.  If that is what you’re looking for, then Interpals does give you the option to search for romantic relationships, but I would take caution in case you meet a weirdo.

Keep In Touch!

This point is a very tough one for me, as not following this dictate cost me a very dear friend.  We all know that things happen in our lives that force us to not meet up with our best intentions.  In my case, a very busy work schedule along with meeting my husband through an online matching site caused me to totally neglect my friends.  When I basically fell off the grid, I was corresponding with one lady in Australia and one in Bavaria, both of whom were completely amazing!  I have tried to reach back out to them, but I really can’t blame them for not wanting to return my correspondence.  If you start a pen pal relationship with someone, then stick to your word when you say that you’ll be consistent in your communication with them!

Snail Mail vs Email

I’m not sure about other sites, but on Interpals, you can choose between whether or not you want to correspond with people via regular “snail” mail or only through email.  In connection with my above point, it’s very important to make sure that the person you’re talking to wants to correspond the same way you do.  This was the big mistake I made with the friend from Bavaria I mentioned above.  She only wanted to correspond via regular mail, and preferred handwritten mail.  While I wouldn’t have minded doing this every once in a while, doing it all the time was very difficult for me.  Not only did I have to make sure my handwriting was legible (very difficult with carpal tunnel syndrome), but I always had to make sure that I had the necessary amount of postage on hand to send to Germany.  Long story short, if you really don’t want to have your only way of corresponding be through snail mail, then don’t set that person up as your pen pal!

 

Well, that’s my experience with having a pen pal, and what to do and don’t do if you think this might be a way for you to expand your circle of friends.  This is not a sponsored post by Interpals, and I’ve only mentioned them because their site was the one I chose all those years ago.  I’m sincerely hoping that my life settles down a bit in the next few months, so that I can hop back on Interpals and find a couple of new pen pals.  If you’ve connected with pen pals, please comment and tell me how it went for you.

Follow my blog with Bloglovin
 

show?id=176C1lekBn8&bids=467303 How To Be A Pen Pal

pinit_fg_en_rect_red_28 How To Be A Pen Pal

Kim

Spokane based lifestyle blogger with a blended family and crazy miniature English bulldog.

pinit_fg_en_rect_red_28 How To Be A Pen Pal

29 Comments

  1. CLAIRE - HEART HANDMADE UK

    I BECAME TOTALLY ADDICTED TO POST CROSSING WHEN I FOUND IT. AND THEN MY HOUSEMATE GOT JEALOUS OF ALL THE COOL POSTCARD I WAS RECEIVING AND HE ALSO BECAME ADDICTED. WE EVENTUALLY GAVE UP WHEN THE COST OF POSTAGE STAMPS BECAME SILLY BUT I LOVED CONNECTING WITH PEOPLE ALL OVER THE WORLD. SWAPBOT WAS ANOTHER GREAT WEBSITE THAT I LOVED BEING PART OF 🙂

    06 . 07 . 2017
    • Kim

      Yes, the postage does tend to creep up there! Thanks for stopping by!

      07 . 07 . 2017
  2. Sabrina @ PLN

    This is such a neat idea! I like your honesty point, it’s best to disclose what you want out of a pen pal relationship!

    06 . 07 . 2017
    • Kim

      Thanks for stopping by! Lying on this type of site will get you in a whole bunch of trouble! I’ve met a couple of liars, and it totally takes the fun out of the experience!

      07 . 07 . 2017
  3. Latisha

    Hey Kim! I was just wondering about having a penpal for my kids and myself. Thanks for the info on things to think about before committing to being a penpal.

    08 . 07 . 2017
    • Kim

      Hi Latisha! That sounds terrific that you’re considering this for you and the kids! It definitely is a commitment, but can be so worth it if you find the right friend. Thanks for stopping by!

      08 . 07 . 2017
  4. cassie

    I have never had a pen pal oddly enough but i’m not sure why we seem to only keep this as an activity for children because i can see how it would be so fun and rewarding as an adult. we hardly get anything in the mail anymore and if we do it’s always bills! Would love to get a hand written letter or could exchange emails too i suppose!

    08 . 07 . 2017
    • Kim

      Hi Cassie! Yes, it certainly is a lot more fun than bills in the mail!

      08 . 07 . 2017
  5. Cassandra

    Nice. i never heard of that site. I will Def Check it out! Thanks for the INFO. Having a penpal as an Adult would be great

    08 . 07 . 2017
    • Kim

      Thanks Cassandra! I’ve enjoyed it, and can’t wait to get back into it.

      09 . 07 . 2017
  6. Nikki | It's All BlogSense

    This is interesting. I never knew such a thing existed. I just might have to check it out.

    09 . 07 . 2017
  7. Chellbee

    I didn’t realize there were sites out there to help with finding pen pals. thanks for sharing I will def have to look further into this.

    09 . 07 . 2017
  8. pAMMY

    LOVE READING THIS GREAT POST! i AM DEFINITELY TWEETING THIS!

    pAMMY – JOYFULSOURCE.COM

    09 . 07 . 2017
    • Kim

      Thanks Pammy! It’s a fun process! Glad you enjoyed it!

      09 . 07 . 2017
  9. Shawna

    I used to love having pen pals. It was amazing to connect with those around the world.

    09 . 07 . 2017
  10. Amber Myers

    Having a pen pal would be so much fuN! I’m tempted to get one. I always like to learn about other people.

    09 . 07 . 2017
    • Kim

      Hi! This is a great way to meet other people, and you can even do a language exchange.

      10 . 07 . 2017
  11. katie

    its the best feeling ever getting a letter in the mail! I love when I get letters from my mom 🙂

    09 . 07 . 2017
  12. Anabelle

    I love HAndwritten letters! maybe i will have to try this out, thanks 🙂

    10 . 07 . 2017
  13. lex

    NEW TO ME, BUT AM GLAD I FOUND OUT ABOUT THIS. REALLY AMAZING ALOT OF THINGS OUT THERE ON THE INTERNET THAT CAN BETTER OUR LIVES YET WE KNOW NOT ABOUT THEM.

    10 . 07 . 2017
  14. Katriza

    Wow I would love to have a pen pal! Definitely haven’t tried it before but would love to!

    10 . 07 . 2017
  15. ANDREA

    oUR KIDS USED TO HAVE PEN PALS. I NEVER THOUGHT TO HAVE ONE AS AN ADULT; SOUNDS LIKE FUN. I LOVE GETTING MAIL TOO:)

    10 . 07 . 2017
  16. Sarah

    There’s something so special about getting an actual letter in the mail. I really miss this. Thanks to your post, I’m going to look into finding someone I can penpal with.

    10 . 07 . 2017
  17. Chava Mazal Stark

    I love this idea! I haven’t had a pen pal in years — not since I was a kid — and I certainly miss the correspondence.

    p.s., my comment shows up as being in all caps and I can’t seem to turn it off — i’m sorry for internet yelling if it publishes this way!

    10 . 07 . 2017
  18. Blair villanueva

    though emails are here, i still find letters to be more thoughtful and personal. I love reading ths letter and see handwritings of the senders.

    Back in high school, i used to collect them all, and the stamps too!

    11 . 07 . 2017
    • Kim

      Hi Blair! I did the same thing with stamps! Unfortunately, I threw them all away when I moved from Brooklyn 🙁

      11 . 07 . 2017
  19. Gillian

    In the digital era, not many people keep this habit, receiving letters seems like a blast from the past for me.

    11 . 07 . 2017
    • Kim

      Hi Gillian! Yes, it was quite an interesting experience. Most of the time I only ever received junk mail or bills, so the letters from my friends were a real treat!

      11 . 07 . 2017
  20. Nadine Cathleen

    Oh I would love to write old school handwritten letters. that must be so much fun (except the postage haha). What a cool idea to have a pen pal!

    12 . 07 . 2017

Leave A Comment

LOFT
LOFT